On Friday, Congress released their tax bill. The Ways and Means Committee released their highlights of the bill, which is more than 1,000 pages long.
The bill, which is officially referred to as the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (H.R. 1), "overhauls America’s tax code to deliver historic tax relief for workers, families and job creators, and revitalize our nation’s economy."
It achieves this, says the Committee, by "lowering taxes across the board, eliminating costly special-interest tax breaks, and modernizing our international tax system." The hope is the act will create more jobs, increase paychecks, and simplify the tax code for all Americans.
"With this bill, the typical family of four earning the median family income of $73,000 will receive a tax cut of $2,059," said the website.
Here are their highlights.
- Lowers individual taxes and sets the rates at 0%, 10%, 12%, 22%, 24%, 32%, 35%, and 37% so people can keep more of their hard-earned money.
- Significantly increases the standard deduction to protect roughly double the amount of what you earn each year from taxes—from $6,500 and $13,000 under current law to $12,000 and $24,000 for individuals and married couples, respectively.
- Continues to allow people to write off the cost of state and local taxes—up to $10,000. Gives individuals and families the ability to deduct property and income taxes—or sales taxes—to best fit their unique circumstances.
- Takes action to support more American families. Expanding the Child Tax Credit from $1,000 to $2,000 for single filers and married couples to help parents with the cost of raising children, and preserving the Child and Dependent Care Tax Credit and the Adoption Tax Credit.
- Preserves the mortgage interest deduction—providing tax relief to current and aspiring homeowners. For all homeowners with existing mortgages that were taken out to buy a home, there will be no change to the current mortgage interest deduction.
- Provides relief for Americans with expensive medical bills by expanding the medical expense deduction for 2017 and 2018 for medical expenses exceeding 7.5 percent of adjusted gross income, and rising to 10 percent beginning in 2019.
- Eliminates Obamacare’s individual mandate penalty tax—providing families with much-needed relief and flexibility to buy the health care that’s right for them if they choose.
- Improves savings vehicles for education by allowing families to use 529 accounts to save for elementary, secondary and higher education.
The Committee also highlighted what they call the "simple, fair 'postcard' filing." They lamented the amount of time and money that American families each year just to file their taxes. Under the GOP tax reform plan, they say that will change. They say when the bill passes, 9 out of 10 Americans "will be able to file their taxes on a form as simple as a postcard."
Will you benefit if the GOP tax bill passes? Let us know in the comments. In other news, yet another Democrat was accused of sexual harassment.